16 Dec 1988
Behind the Scene and other Major Plot Points
….first score for a Hollywood production.
During filming, Dustin Hoffman was unsure of the film’s potential and his own performance. Three weeks into the project, Hoffman wanted out, telling director Barry Levinson, “Get Richard Dreyfuss, get somebody, Barry, because this is the worst work of my life.” Hoffman would nab his second Best Actor Academy Award for his work.
“Two Schmucks in a Car”
During filming, both Dustin Hoffman and Tom Cruise doubted the movie’s potential and jokingly called it, “Two Schmucks in a Car”.
After being interviewed by the psychiatrist, Raymond (Dustin Hoffman) leans his head against Charlie’s and says “My main man Charlie”. This was unscripted, and improvised by Hoffman.
Tom Cruise’s wearing Ray Bans boosted sales of that style 15%.
To avoid strings
Barry Levinson specifically instructed composer Hans Zimmer to avoid strings in his score as he felt it would make the film too sentimental.
“…and the Oscar goes to…”
(29 March 1989) When Dustin Hoffman’s Best Actor Oscar was presented to him byMichael Douglas, the words that preceded the announcement of Hoffman’s name were, “…and the Oscar goes to…” which, for the first time, had replaced the traditional line, “…and the winner is…”, etc. The Academy had made the switch for discretionary purposes, and the practice has been in effect ever since 1989.
Biggest Grossing Oscar-winner
At one point, “Rain Man” was the biggest grossing Best Picture Oscar-winner. It was subsequently surpassed by Forrest Gump (1994) which had been put into development at a rival studio at roughly the same time.
Reportedly one of Princess Diana’s favorite films.
Included among the “1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die”, edited by Steven Schneider.
What is ‘Rain Man’ about?
When his wealthy but estranged father dies, wheeler-dealer Charlie Babbitt (Tom Cruise) thinks he will inherit a fortune until he learns that the $3 million estate was placed into a trust for an older autistic brother he didn’t even know he had. In anger at his father, Charlie kidnaps Raymond (Dustin Hoffman) from the Wallbrook Institute and takes him on a cross-country trip in hopes of forcing Doctor Bruner (Gerald R. Molen) to give him half of the estate in return for bringing Raymond back to the hospital. Along the way, however, Charlie comes to remember, understand, and connect with his brother
Is ‘Rain Man’ based on a book?
Rain Man is based on a story and screenplay written by American screenwriters Barry Morrow and Ronald Bass. The screenplay was subsequently novelized by Lenore Fleischer. Rain Man won the Academy Award for Best Picture of 1989.
What does the title mean?
Charlie recalls an imaginary childhood friend he refers to as ‘the Rain Man’, who would sing to him whenever he got scared. After sharing parts of their childhood, Charlie comes to realize that the imaginary Rain Man was actually Raymond.
How does the movie end?
Charlie and Raymond meet with Dr Bruner and a court-appointed psychiatrist Dr Marston (Barry Levinson) to evaluate Raymond’s psychiatric state. Marston begins by asking Ray to tell him about his adventures the past week, but then presses him to decide for himself whether he wants to stay in Los Angeles with his brother or return to Wallbrook. [spoiler]Unable to distinguish these as two mutually exclusive questions, Ray becomes more and more agitated, so Charlie puts an end to the questioning and agrees that Ray needs to return to Wallbrook In the final scene, [spoiler]Charlie sees Ray and Dr Bruner off at the Amtrak station and promises Ray that he will visit in two weeks.
Did Charlie get his half of his father’s will?
Charlie did not. During the meeting where Dr. Bruner offers Charlie $250,000 to walk away, Bruner makes it clear that Charlie’s father placed the money in a trust for the care of Raymond and that the courts can’t touch it.
RT/Meta Critic Review
Everything about the acting and direction of Rain Man is so exquisitely calibrated and so right that it’s all too easy to forget how much could have gone wrong.(Click here to see)